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Batch Strength Tour Update: The First Leg

May 2, 2024

Leg one of the tour complete and all smooth sailing so far! The pick-up travelled almost 2000 kilometres from Islay to Switzerland to kick things off. Ken and I started, darting all over Switzerland for a mix of in shop tasting sessions and masterclasses with a whisky food pairing added to the mix over three very busy days. Ken’s stay was short and sweet as he flew back to Scotland and I drove down to Italy to meet George.

Italy was when things started to heat up (quite literally). We held tastings in Rome, Florence and Ferrara with the biggest being for 70 people in the cellar of a castle – yes, it was as cool as it sounds. Lots of long drives between cities with beautiful Italian scenery and me scaring George with my questionable European driving!

Both Slovenia and Croatia were whistle-stop tours with us spending a day in each. Stunning countries, and the warmest reception from everyone who came along to see us both days. We were in Portoroz in Slovenia which is a beautiful seaside town with a very thirsty population! Zagreb was equally as pretty, and we hosted two very relaxed events and poured a lot of whisky!

We set off for Budapest the next day for a barrel top tasting which was George’s last event before he left the next day and I was joined by Peter. Peter was thrown in at the deep end with a full day of talking all things Kilchoman before hosting a masterclass that evening.

We had a five-hour drive ahead of us to Graz for a tasting with the Islay Whisky Chapter. I was designated weather reporter, informing Peter whenever it got hotter before eventually hitting 30 degrees – my pale Scottish skin was in for a shock! The tasting was so popular they couldn’t fit everyone in one room, so we split it in half. A really enthusiastic and knowledgeable group and a nice finish for my last tasting of the first leg.

A great start to the tour. Very happy to see the Batch Strength going down so well, it really is a standout whisky. Some wonderful events hosted so far, seeing seasoned whisky enthusiasts as well as some newbies. The stillhouse team have been on their best behaviour during the live Facetime calls and are seasoned professionals for their second year talking live to people across Europe. I have passed the baton on to Peter and Catherine who were waking up to a 6am drive to western Austria. Have fun guys!

Emma

To find out where else in Europe we are heading, click here.

 

 

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